Women's Sport: Phil Neville to step down as England manager


Phil Neville will not renew his contract as the England Women manager when it ends in July 2021, the Football Association looks set to announce.

The Times has revealed that Neville will step down and will assist with the search for his replacement. The FA is set to announce more information on his departure today.

Neville was due to be leading Team GB at the Olympics this summer and then the Lionesses at the Euros next year before both events were postponed by a year due to the coronavirus. His contract ends on 21 July 2021, before the Olympics which starts on 23 July.

Neville took the role in 2018 and got off to a positive start that saw England win the 2019 SheBelieves Cup. Since then he has faced increased criticism after the team failed to make the top three at the FIFA Women's World Cup and losing seven of 11 matches since the tournament ended. 

After a disappointing performance at this year's SheBelieves Cup, where the team lost two of their three matches, winning only against Japan, Neville said that he still had support from the FA.

The coronavirus pandemic has no doubt forced the issue. GiveMeSport took a poll of readers asking if they wanted him to lead the team at the delayed Euros in 2022 and 78% of participants voted no

The Times points out that when a successor is found, Neville could stand down before July next year, but the current timings mean a tight turnaround between a new coach coming in and the Euros in 2022 and the World Cup in 2023.

Any of the national coaches could coach Team GB in the Olympics, meaning that Neville's successor could assume the role or the FA could appoint someone else with more time to work with the squad. 

Favourites to replace Neville include Casey Stoney of Manchester United and Jill Ellis, former coach of the US National Women's Team who stepped down from her role after winning the 2019 World Cup.

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